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    You are in: Home / Cookbooks / I'm just mad about Saffron, Saffron's mad about me
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    107 recipes in

    I'm just mad about Saffron, Saffron's mad about me

    [Cover photo by Varsha.] Saffron, sold as either threads or powder, has a pungent, slightly bittersweet taste, which is quite intense, so that very little is needed in cooking. This is lucky because it is the world's most expensive spice (over $200 per ounce). There are several reasons for this: saffron threads are the dried stigmas of the saffron crocus, each of which contains only three threads; the threads must be picked by hand; more than 75,000 flowers are required just to produce 1 lb of saffron filaments; and it has a relatively brief autumn harvesting season. Saffron is grown mainly in Iran and Spain and, in smaller amounts, in Greece, Italy, Turkey and India (the saffron of Kashmir, the most prized of all, is now mostly unavailable in the West). Most saffron sold in the U.S. is from Spain. Because so little is used in a dish, it is important that saffron be well distributed throughout the dish. The spice may simply be crumbled into sauces and soups. For other dishes, it works better to first dissolve the saffron in a small amount of liquid such as water or stock and then add to the dish. It can also be toasted before using. A pinch of saffron (1 pinch = 1/8 tsp) contains about 20 threads, and 1/2 tsp threads = 1/4 tsp saffron powder. Like most seasonings, the flavor of saffron diminishes over time, but if stored in a container with a tight lid in a cool, dry place it will keep at least 3 years; threads retain their flavor longer than powder.
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    88 Reviews |  By PaulaG

    This is easy, simple and wonderful. The original recipe which was printed in the Spring 2005 Penzeys catalog, calls for long-grain rice; however, I liked it much better with basmati. Also, the original recipe called for minced onion but I found it worked very well with dried onion. I indicated that the butter is optional, because I did not add it.

    Recipe #113983

    From the New Book of Middle Eastern Food, posted for ZWT III, North Africa and the Middle East.

    Recipe #232781

    From Please to the Table. A large version of the buns commonly served in Sweden between Santa Lucia Day (Dec. 13) and Christmas, but lovely for any time for breakfast or afternoon tea.

    Recipe #234720

    These are the most delicious scallops I have ever had. Perfect for a special occasion as an appetizer. I found the fish stock hard to find so I substituted vegetable stock and it was just as good. Also, I would imagine you could substitute the scallops for prawns.

    Recipe #167660

    I've served this dish many ways. Spoon it into bowls over thick pieces of garlic bread (best) or serve it over cooked rice. I've also made a tomato sauce and added this variety of fish to it and served it over linguine or rice.

    Recipe #110609

    A Morrocan-inspired rice dish from the The Classic Mediterranean cookbook, with a few minor changes. This would probably taste good, too with basmati substituted for the regular white rice. Update: per the excellent suggestion of our dear Rita L, I subbed water for the broth in the original recipe. Thanks, Reets! cg

    Recipe #185203

    A lovely side dish for those who like saffron. May be made with low-sodium bouillon if you wish.

    Recipe #238452

    From an old Elle magazine recipe card.

    Recipe #211123

    An interesting meld of Indian and Chinese cooking. My husband's cousin always makes this yummy rice for family gatherings. This is her recipe as told to me over the phone. Amounts in the ingredients are our best guesses since she doesn't measure the ingredients. I omitted the salt in the recipe because I cook low salt. You can add salt to taste at step 6. Very little is needed if you choose to add msg and bear in mind that oyster sauce usually contains some salt.

    Recipe #206272

    A filling and satisfying soup. Barley may be substituted for the noodles. If you want a bit of extra crunch, add some sliced water chestnuts. If the breasts and thighs you're using are large, you can cut down on the number. If not used to low-sodium cooking, you may want to add more salt. May be frozen (see instructions below).

    Recipe #202762

    A special-occasion braided bread. "Cooking time" includes both time for bread to rise and baking time.

    Recipe #107001

    An Iranian omelet made with greens. May be halved. If you just slice the lettuce thinly, it can then be pulled apart into strips.

    Recipe #184430

    Persian noodle soup (ashe means soup, reshte means noodles). This one also has beans and a beef garnish. Reshte can be found in Middle Eastern food stores. From step 4 on, you'll be cooking the soup and the meat garnish simultaneously, going back and forth between them, so you may want to keep 2 timers going to keep straight when to do what. Be sure to cook over very low heat so that liquids don't evaporate much. Preparation time does not include pre-soaking of the beans. The four servings are four HEARTY servings.

    Recipe #185728

    4 Reviews |  By chia

    another quick side dish, the saffron gives the potatoes a lovely golden color.

    Recipe #80008

    Heres a classic Indian dessert, made with drained yogurt, cardamom, and saffron. The saffron is toasted until brittle so that you can grind it easily. If you grind your own cardamom seeds, use only a half teaspoon instead of the quantity in our recipe. Time does not include One hour refrigeration.

    Recipe #133794

    5 Reviews |  By Rita~

    This lovely golden Savory bread is made using Pumpkin but butternut, sweet potato, or any hard cooked squash can be used. Canned or fresh cooked. It's very lightly flavored with cinnamon and ginger. Receiving it's beautiful golden color from the squash, the saffron and turmeric. You can use saffron and or turmeric.

    Recipe #189771

    2 Reviews |  By 199949

    This creamy pudding is made even more mouthwatering when infused with a saffron flavor. It would be a perfect complement to end a traditional Indian meal.

    Recipe #114899

    This is a delicious and quick shrimp saute using typical Portuguese ingredients like red wine and plenty of garlic and parsley. The saffron makes it a little different, and a touch of crushed red peppers at the end of cooking make it wonderful! I used Argentine pink shrimp from Trader Joe's, and they were awesome!

    Recipe #94596

    This rice is Indian inspired and so the recipe calls for traditional basmati, but Texmati rice will give much the same effect, and in fact any white rice is good made this way. Substitute almonds for the cashews if you prefer.

    Recipe #136535

    This yummy curry is one of my husbands specialities.

    Recipe #21607

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